Vêves Castle

Vêves Castle

Belgian Castles

Vêves Castle

Vêves Castle, locally known as Château de Vêves, lies a couple of kilometers southwest of the village of Celles, in the province of Namur in the Wallonia region in Belgium.

The first castle at this site was probably built in the early 8th century by Pepin de Herstal. He built his castle on a strategic spot; a rocky outcrop in a valley that lay on the old route from Dinant to Rochefort. Not much is known about this first castle. In the 12th century the castle came into the hands of Wauthier de Beaufort through marriage. The Beaufort family took their family name from their Beaufort Castle near the town of Huy in Belgium. Several members of his family distinguished themselves in the crusades; the grandfather of Wauthier followed Godfried of Bouilloin to the Holy Land and a son of Wauthier; Théodore de Celles, took part in the 3rd crusade.

In 1200 the castle burned down, but it was rebuilt in 1230. During the War of the Cow (1275-1277) the Lords of Beaufort fought on the side of the Count of Luxembourg and the Count of Namur. Later Gérard de Beaufort distinguished himself in the Battle of the Golden Spur (1302) and the Pevelenberg Battle (1304). In 1466 Louis de Beaufort took part in the siege of Dinant and Vêves Castle burned down for the 2nd time and again it was rebuilt.

During the 18th and 19th century the Lords of Beaufort and their wives all played important roles in French, Belgian and Dutch politics. Through marriage their family name had become De Liedekerke Beaufort. In the 20th century Count Hadelin de Liedekerke de Beaufort strived to open Vêves Castle up to the public. He donated the castle to a foundation that restored the castle under chairmanship of his son Christian.

The oldest parts of the present castle date back to the 13th century. One of these parts is the 36 meters high keep. It has a diameter of 8 meters and at the base its walls are 3 meters thick. Nowadays we see the castle in its 17th century appearance. Originally the walls and the towers would have had crenelations and a wall walk, but these disappeared during 15th century renovations.

For a small fee you can visit Vêves Castle. You can freely roam all its rooms, most of which are arranged with 18th century furniture. This is a very nice castle and really one to see!

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